The_Breakfast_Club

Had a series of “Breakfast Club” games where no one could share keywords. By team:
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Captain America (Chaos War 203) rolled a lot of Leadership and made some attacks. Aside from the stellar Rare from 2011’s Captain America set, this piece might be the most Cap-like of them all and may well be my first choice to represent the character in future games.

Despite being a crook, Hired Goon (Batman 203) benefited greatly from Cap’s Leadership (“He was in ‘Nam” was the brilliantly F.U.N. explanation given by my opponent in the match) and scored some great shots with his Ranged Combat Expertise.

Blue Beetle (DC 10th Anniversary 009) was the Goon’s Boss, but he was better used for Running Shots to Pulse Wave, having ended up on that power combo thanks to Mystics damage. It worked. Never had to use his self Prob Control. I like this Reyes kid. Eventually I want to run a team of Hispanics like him…

…and fellow hero of the Latin persuasion, The Question (Streets 015b), who I used correctly this time. Her free little Smoke Cloud was super for the stealthy Hired Goon, and Probability Control is always welcome (on my team).

Ensign Anton Chekov (Star Trek Away Team 007b) supplied plenty of Telekinesis. I may have forgotten to use his Tricorder SP to expose a Stealthy target, though. Useful and Nifty enough to make my eventual Russian team.

Bofur the Dwarf (Hobbit 014) rounded out this force. With TK to help his low Speed, Bofur did his share of leadoff fighting. He’s better played in a crowd with his 17 Defend, though.

There was a shortened match in which I used some archers.
Arsenal (Streets 045) did nothing, really, as all targets were too far away to even so much as use Outsiders on. But I was prepared to do just that against a Utility Belt-equipped opponent. It’s the one thing he’s really good for.

Green Arrow (New 52 Justice League 007) also did nothing for the same reasons as Arsenal above, having to hide behind a League of Assassins member to avoid being possibly one-shot by ReMAC. It worked, but time ran out before I could force my opponent from his hiding spot with the long-range RCE of Manticore.

A third “Breakfast Club” team:
Frost Giant Champion (Avengers Movie 031) kept an enemy Psychic Blaster ineffective thanks to his Battle Fury-endowing SP, and dealt a great deal of the KOs of my game.

Frank Drake (Amazing Spider-Man 013a) also was able to fully nerf that target with his double Outwit against mystics and monsters. He happily fits two of the F.U.N. theme teams I’ll be highlighting in an upcoming regular feature.

Godiva (Batman 029) took so long to get into the action, the fight was basically over. I almost pushed her just to see what she’d do, but decided against it with only one target at the time.

Even without Thanos to give her Perplex, Terraxia (Infinity Gauntlet 009) works out as a solid brick. Can’t imagine playing her again without her “pa” though.

At first, I thought Batman (Batman 053a) was just a pale weak shadow of a certain Caped Crusader (his prime version). But in practice, using his Flock of Bats gave him some nice Poison tricks (during beginning phase, free action detach Grey Flock, free action Outwit defenses, then free action Poison = WINNING). He’s also a decently powered piece besides, and well-priced. This Batman’s gone from the “I’ma trade/sell him soon as I play him” to “I’d like to run this piece again!”

The next day, I played an even larger version of the Breakfast Club theme:

Ezio Auditore de Firenze (Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood 001) didn’t do a whole lot despite his solid stats and powers. Still, he’s the only one of the set I wanted, so I’ll try his out again. Sometime.

Catwoman (Batman 204) was part of my main offense. Too bad no one fielded a relic in this friendly little game. Despite the fact that I played her with the following piece to take advantage of her Support trait, it never came into play.

Batman (Streets of Gotham 052) anchored the team early on, but he wound up falling apart and leaving me in dead last place. The black BatGhost is too soft for his cost. But he’s destined for a future team for sure.

Rhino (Amazing Spider-Man 204) was played with the understanding that “along the path” meant he could hit squares adjacent to his path, but in retrospect, I see we played it wrong. But I still might consider him over the more costly (and effective) main set Rhino to save the 30-plus points because he’s Indomitable and can more easily set up his straight-line Charges.

Spider-Girl (Amazing Spider-Man 027) worked well to evacuate Rhino to heal him after his crit miss, then to draw fire from him. This is a good piece. I want to mod one into her original Araña costume.

Bifur The Dwarf (Hobbit 010), another rare Dwarf with range, managed to contribute a bit with Running Shot and Incap (though I really should have just used his 2 damage instead of pushing the target because A) The target only had Toughness so the net damage would be the same and B) I rolled a crit hit). Nothing really distinctive about him otherwise, though.

I was far too overconfident with Speed (Chaos War 021) and got him good and KO’d early on. He’s for Young Avengers teams only. And who knows when I’ll play them again? They need their leader Patriot redone.

Johnny Blaze (Amazing Spider-Man 007) was played even more recklessly. NEVER PUSH HIM, no matter how enticing that shotgun power seems, unless you’re guaranteed to get penetrating damage out a landed hit.

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All right. There’s one more week of Figure Flush to go. But next week is the beginning of another month, meaning it’s time for another Top Ten. What’ll it be of? Stay tuned.

Week six is done. Almost through. This time I’ll review these by team.

These barely got a workout in a shortened game:

Batman (DC 10th Anniversary 001) has Leap/Climb and Outwit and 12 AV and is only 63 points. He was about to wreck it. But time was up.

On the other hand, Batman (Streets of Gotham 032) got one-shot in round two. Such a great sculpt but possibly the worst Batman dial ever.

The Batman of Zur-En-Arrh (Batman 103) had only begun to fight. He has so many powers — Prob, Perplex, Super Strength, Toughness, anti-Super Senses/Mastermind/Shape Change — that it was hard to get a handle on how to use him. I’ll save him for my next big Batman team.

Captain America (DC 10th Anniversary 001) also was only getting started, missing his attempted KO of Dracula. I didn’t build a great force to use Leadership on.

Wonder Man (Chaos War 210) missed his attack and got absolutely pounded. Was just lucky that my opponent ran out of actions to finish him off — and that the game ended after round 3.

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This force of Monsters had me playing “Thriller”…
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Fimbul the Hunter (Hobbit 005) was the MVP of his Monster squad. (Landing 3 straight Super Senses rolls will do that.) A good leading attacker to soften up for others or to finish off weakened foes. Solid piece, though niche enough that I might not consider using later.

Grinnah the Goblin (Hobbit 008) is fearsome with his free-attack-on-his mark SP. Another piece that’s niche; needs a taxi or TK for best effect.

Being able to shamble from square to square helps Living Mummy (Amazing Spider-Man 011) ONCE he gets to Charge range. He can shift to a better point to use his Probability or Mind Control, perhaps.

Lurtz (Lord of the Rings 010), probably the longest-unplayed figure in my box, finally got his workout. Not bad, but certainly only reserved for Orc teams.

I kept forgetting Vampire (Amazing Spider-Man 012)’s speed gets a boost when the scent of blood is in the air. Might’ve gotten me better use from him as a taxi. Hilariously comic accurate moment: he crit-missed on a push to KO Dracula. WHO’S the king of vampires, here?

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Played an all-Dwarf team. It came up short.
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Dori The Dwarf (Hobbit 015) only got KO’d thanks to how long it takes dwarves to get in the action. I also forgot to keep him with his brothers Nori The Dwarf (Hobbit 025) and Ori The Dwarf (Hobbit 016) to possibly get his Duo Attack SP to work (though, again, I never got the chance anyway). Similarly, Nori couldn’t use his special Prob due to lines of fire being cut off. And Ori was so stuck in hindering that he could barely Perplex his bros, much less get off meaningful shots. I’ll try this trio again someday, but much more purposefully. Ori in particular is vital for the Dwarves for his top-dial Perplex.

Oin The Dwarf (Hobbit 013) had the same problem all dwarves do: Low Charge speed. I absolutely needed the Kinetic Accelerator I played in order to do ANYTHING with these guys, and it doesn’t help when that opening Charge misses. Oin’s a solid dwarf, but he may not be the first I consider on any force with Thorin (as there are two others that do the Charge thing when he’s around but with better AV).

Balin The Dwarf (Hobbit 026) is worth pushing with his excellent 11 AV (with Thorin) and CCE. He’s also some 20 points cheaper than the similarly SP’d 77-point Gloin.

Kili The Dwarf (Hobbit 011) was the indispensable shooter. Can’t imagine leaving him off a Thorin-led team, what with his late-dial SP boosting the king’s DV. And when foes feel Kili’s 4 damage from range, they WILL try to hit him onto his late dial…

Fili The Dwarf (Hobbit 009), once he was pushed, brought some much-needed Perplex to the dwarven swarm. Between that and his Defend, he helped make the team surprisingly competent despite its shortcomings.

(There I go with the short jokes again…)

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On Friday, part two. Signed, The Breakfast Club.

Here’s what else I played past weekend and what my impressions were:

Both versions of Black Glove Demon (Streets of Gotham) were little more than easy points in their game. I think one needs to run at least three of them to really make them work.

Dwalin the Dwarf (The Hobbit 006) got overwhelmed in his game, cursed by dice rolls. Still, the dwarf put up a decent fight otherwise. He’ll be about the first dwarf I’ll consider for non-Tolkien teams (after Gimli).

I’m realizing now that I forgot Gloin the Dwarf (The Hobbit 019) gets an AV boost in addition to Charge when Thorin’s around. That’s what I get for trying to play a game while on a long-distance call with my brother. I’ll NEVER play him without Thorin.

Manphibian (Amazing Spider-Man 025) was fine even though he couldn’t use his water-boosted HSS early on due to an enemy Thor, Frog of Thunder equipped with Armor Piercing. For 60 points, the scaly alien is solid.

Martian Manhunter (DC  10th Anniversary 019) worked well…with a loaded Utility Belt. Though in actuality, I didn’t do much pushing until the game was well in hand. All that penetrating damage looks great, but I don’t know how well that 16 DV can hold up for his 100-point cost. Will have to try him out on a “My Favorite Martian” theme.

Skrull Commando (Avengers Movie 008), both versions, was basically relegated to tie-up, and not very effective tie-up at that. At least he’s cheap. But unless it’s a Modern Age game, this guy’s NOT taking the place of the old Supernova generics for a Skrull team.

On the other hand, the Skrull General (Avengers Movie 032) brings a lot to the HeroClix table: Leadership and super-taxi to start, giving way to some PB and Outwit later. A must for Skrull swarms.

Skrull Infiltrator (Avengers Movie 207) is similarly indispensable, especially the Smoke Clouding, Barrier-building, Stealthy Close Combat Expert. Only the Barrier came into play, though. Looking forward to running a pair in a future Skrull team.

Thorin Oakenshield (The Hobbit 004) is absolutely needed to get his pokey dwarf company mobile. Thorin also was decent in the end of the fight, coming very close to snatching an unlikely victory. I’ll have to consider him for future Ruler  or Warrior teams for his double-Carry trait.

Worldbreaker (Marvel 10th Anniversary 013) absolutely cleaned house at his 150 level. Want to run him at full strength!

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OK. Just one or two more weeks to go, and I’ll have run almost every unplayed piece and can go back to playing stuff I just wanna play all the time, like that Mysterio team from the last Battle Report. :)

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, this past Saturday’s game was green. All characters had to be wearing the color or BE the color.

Among two other teams I ran, I finally got to run a force composed entirely of that fishbowl-helmed master of illusion:

MYSTERIO!

Mysterio (Web of Spider-Man) 75 x2
Rookie Mysterio (Ultimates) 44
Mysterio (Amazing Spider-Man 026) 70
Mysterio (Amazing Spider-Man 026) 15 x4
Mysterio (Amazing Spider-Man 206) 62
+ Utility Belt 13

=399 points. Mysterio has used something like pretty much every item on the Utility Belt in his schemes, so it seems a fit. I put it on one of the 15-point Mysterios to mess with my opponent’s mind. He ran Immortus, Lizard (Amazing Spider-Man), Iron Fist (Secret Invasion) and Electro (Amazing Spider-Man 021).

We were on the Carnival map for the funhouse theme in keeping with Mysterio’s penchant for showmanship. I managed to block much of Immortus’ LOF to keep my Probability Control active, tossing up Smoke Clouds to keep folks Stealthed. Had WAY too much fun rolling Super Senses and Probability Controlling miss after miss, saying “You fool! That was merely one of my illusions!” Even when I lost a pair of Mysterios — both of them 15-pointers— toward the game’s end, I could still taunt “You still haven’t found the REAL Mysterio!” I even got the chance to pull off one of the 75-pointers’ “Grand Reveal” SP and swap the wounded one for another of the cheapies — a move that works well with their inability to use Outwit more than once a turn anyway.

This game might’ve been the most fun I’ve had in a single HeroClix game.

The show wasn’t done yet. The next day, I ran a St. Patrick’s Day green team of:

Sandman (Web of Spider-Man) 101
Lizard (Amazing Spider-Man) 88 + Animal ATA 4
Electro (Amazing Spider-Man 206) 72
Mysterio (Amazing Spider-Man 026) 70
Scorpion (Web of Spider-Man) 62
Mysterio (Amazing Spider-Man 206) 62
Vulture (Amazing Spider-Man) 61
Mysterio (Amazing Spider-Man 026) 15 x 5

=595 points. And there’s more than 250 more points of green that I could’ve got on this March 17-green team (Doc Ock, Gobby), but I needed to limit it somewhere and still have room for Mysterios. I faced Kai, a really young player, about 8, with a decent grasp of the game despite not quite getting all the rules yet. He definitely wasn’t a pushover with his LOTR team of Legolas, Aragorn, Ringwraith, Mouth of Sauron, Boromir, two Ugluks and Frodo with The One Ring on the Okaara map. Even though I was closing in on a potential wipeout when we ran out of time, I’d only KO’d one of the Ugluks and Mouth.

Piece-by-heretofore-unplayed-piece:

Mysterio (Amazing Spider-Man 026) is OK, I guess. I say this only because I never saw his later clicks and didn’t really experience how he’d work then, with the bull’s eye painted squarely on his bowl-head.
On the other hand, Mysterio (Amazing Spider-Man 026b) was a star of both teams. It was tricky to get them mobilized for maximum lines of fire for Outwit, but once there, they were bosses at it. Best trick was countering a foe’s power then swapping with a Smoke Cloud-using Mysterio 026 in the backfield to keep that use of Outwit safe for the turn. They’re also fantastic sources of 10 AV for Syndicate members.

Lizard (Amazing Spider-Man) ripped things up once he finally got in the fray. Was torn between keeping
Shape Change and pushing to Tail Whip. He’ll make a good bruiser for a Scientist team or a partner for Vixen.

Electro (Amazing Spider-Man 206), with his 9 AV and 2 damage would seem a Running Shot bust. But with Syndicates around to boost AV and Energy Explosion, he did more damage than expected.

Vulture (Amazing Spider-Man) was a sorely needed taxi for the team.

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There’s a LOT more Figure Flush to share in Friday’s part 2 — probably skipping Token Totin’ to give myself more time to compile it all. See ya then!

Continuing this series talking about DC feats and BFC cards that I went back and customized with artwork for fun. (Here’s a link back to the original concept.) Today, Card Arts begins with Origin’s Feat cards.

The first feat of the set is Mercenary, a confusing feat with too much text to possibly fit an image. So on to the next, a feat I forgot to include when I uploaded these cards to Heroclixin’:

Disintegrate

Element Lad is disintegrating a boulder into a gas. This was a difficult image to find; it’s not so common to see a character literally reduce an object to dust (at least not in my comics collection or easily on Google).

I’ve maybe used this feat once, ever. It could have some relevance today by being one of the few ways to “destroy” relics. But those things have been almost thoroughly sidelined by Resources, now. Disintegrate was never a great feat even in its day, anyway.

This bit of 2005 art by Barry Kitson is from his run on Mark Waid’s reimagined “threeboot” Legion of Super-Heroes series. It won’t be the last in this Card Arts series.

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Next time, Card Arts continues with another feat in Origin that got missed in my first go-’round.

The report of Figure Flush week four continues.

In alphabetical order again:
Alfred Pennyworth (Batman 031) was a boon to the Batman Fam team he backed. Not enough to actually WIN, but he’s OK. I’ll probably look to the 25-point Unique version instead, though, in the future.

Azrael (Batman 104) just comes off as weak, weak, weak. Weak AV. Weak damage. WeakSAUCE. I can’t definitively say I’ll NEVER play him again — “never” is a mighty long time and his being a black character puts him in my permanent collection — but MAY never play him again.

I thought Beast (Fast Forces 003) would simply be a pale shadow of the excellent GSX Common, but he worked better than expected. I may consider this piece if points are a problem.

Cloak (Amazing Spider-Man 022) is going for two things: Carry and Willpower. At 55 points, he’s a bit too pricey for JUST those things, though, and he’s got to take damage to get to his more useful Poison and Perplex clicks.

Dagger (Amazing Spider-Man 003) spent the game too tied up to use her range powers or heal. Will have to be careful of that, going forward. She’s the key to successful Split/Merge tricks with the C&D duo from Secret Invasion.

Daimon Hellstrom (Amazing Spider-Man 009r), played at the rookie level, is an OK 2nd stringer. Armored Mystics is never bad. Neither is Psychic Blast. He’ll see play on my Angry Mob team, for sure.

Unlike most of the figures in this Flush series, Dracula (Amazing Spider-Man 016) got the full workout in a three-round tournament. Fantastic monster who nevertheless won’t see much future play since I’m not a fan of the character and he won’t fit many of my goofball themes.

Hulk (Galactic Guardians 102) took too long to get into the fray and was quickly dispatched when he did. I played his Banner pog-self all wrong, too. This Hulk just doesn’t have the juice to hack it. Doubtful he’ll make any teams in my hands.

Iceman (Fast Forces 006) is, at last, a solid version of the character for a price that doesn’t seem like totally wasting points. Being able to “freeze” move-and-attack powers is key to using him well.

Magneto (Marvel 10th Anniversary 015) plays like what he is: a stripped-down House of M Magneto. Too point-and-click for me, and that costume was always ridiculous.

Man-Thing (Amazing Spider-Man 033r) is very glass-jawed at the 100-point level. If I ever run him again, it’ll be with the Thunderbolts ATA to help his defense somehow.

Morbius (Amazing Spider-Man 028) would’ve been fine if not for one of those absolute game-killing user errors I seem prone to making. See, he’s got this ability to double-Outwit a non-defense power that I forgot to use EVEN THOUGH I MOVED HIM THERE FOR THAT EXPRESS PURPOSE. So instead of neutering two dangerous enemies, he got KO’d in no time.

Sigh.

I’m not much for the character, so I don’t know when I’ll run Morbius again. But I want to use him correctly, at least.

 Nightwing and Batgirl (Batman 100) led a Batman Family team. Though this duo is highly dangerous with Duo Attack, getting that ability countered made the couple fail to win. I’m not enough of a fan of either to plan any more teams around this 176-point figure, though it’s nice to have.

Orc Swordsman (Hobbit 003b) has Perplex, which the Dracula-led Monster team he was on needed. A pity his damage is so low that he can’t contribute much else. Still, he’ll be on ANY orc team I play, and most Monster squads.

Rogue (Fast Forces 005) was the one who held off that Nightwing/Batgirl duo with her adjacency-based Outwit. I like her; she’s much more economical than the 128-point GSX Rogue. She’ll see the field again sometime.

Spider-Man (Galactic Guardians 104), like his fellow “Newer FF” teammate Hulk, doesn’t hack it in today’s game only a year since his introduction. There are so many better Spideys to pick from. This one’s inability to even so much as Leap/Climb into position to do his Outwitting was his problem in this game.

Werewolf By Night (Amazing Spider-Man 015) wastes his first two clicks in every game he’s in, which I hate about him because he’s prone to getting one-shot (and did). On the other hand, those “Full Moon” clicks are amazing, and even the Shape Change kept him in games longer than he should’ve. Fun piece.

Zuvembie (Amazing Spider-Man 006) wants braaaaains.

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Monday, Card Art returns after a brief hiatus, and maybe some more Token Totin’ on Tuesday or Thursday. Mid-week and Friday, look for Figure Flush week five.

No characters could share keywords for this tournament.

Animal Man (DC 75th Anniversary W-5)
Bilbo Baggins (Hobbit 001)
Cloak (Amazing Spider-Man 202)
Emma Frost (Marvel 10th Anniversary 014)
False Facer (Streets of Gotham 007a)
Gardener (Infinity Gauntlet 004)
Hannibal King (Amazing Spider-Man 013b)
Howard Stark (Avengers Movie 021)
Knuckles (Infinity Challenge)
Wonder Woman (Streets of Gotham 034)

This 800-point team wasn’t exactly optimized, being thrown together solely from the Figure Flush roster of never-played pieces. It wilted like tissue paper in a fireplace under its first opposition: Darkseid, Big Figure, Saint Walker, a stack of Orc pogs and Nightcrawler with a Utility Belt. I’m not certain I’ve ever boned myself worse in a HeroClix match by giving up map choice…and then picking the absolute wrong starting area because I was worried about the wrong character. These are the kinds of games I hate: when I can only levy one or two attacks per turn while my opponent can answer with four or more.

It’s the price of trying to have F.U.N., I guess.

The 2nd round was so full of misses on both players’ part that I had to play sad violin music just about every roll.

Literally. I have a twelve-and-a-half minute-long track on my iPod — “String Quartet – Twilight of Heroes” from the Giant Robo anime — that’s just about the saddest violin music you ever heard during three of its four parts. It was hilarious.

The final round was more just a chance for the losing players to play a game to last man standing. It was characterized by both of us missing that one staggering blow that would irrevocably swing the game in his direction OVER and OVER.

Piece-by-piece:

I wrote this about Animal Man (DC 75th Anniversary W-5) for Pojo.com a couple of years ago:

His opening click is sad, offensively. He can’t copy Special Powers or the standard powers they grant access to. His DV is mediocre and, all too often, soft. “White Senses” could heal him out of his best clicks. And how good CAN the powers of character 82 points and less BE, really, without the stats to back them up?

Unfortunately, my every fear of those weaknesses were borne out (except the healing part, which he was never able to do). Thanks to my #1 favorite figure from 2012, I decided to get this White Lantern for Animal teams, but I’m having some buyer’s remorse. I’ll play him with Vixen and/or Alyosha Kraven or not at all…

Bilbo Baggins (Hobbit 001) was kinda the UNlucky piece, as it seemed that he was never in place to use his “The Lucky Number” SP Probability Control or nearly every reroll he allowed was a miss. The little hobbit will still have a spot on some future team, though…probably my Wee People theme of small-sculpt figures.

Cloak (Amazing Spider-Man 202) was surprisingly good despite not being the greatest threat on the board. All that Improved Movement makes his early Charge+Exploit combo really solid. This wildcard fig will see a lot of play from me.

Emma Frost (Marvel 10th Anniversary 014) was great. I opted to switch her to diamond form when she was hit hard. I’d like to try her again without shifting sometime.

False Facer (Streets of Gotham 007a), despite being mostly filler — I should have made sure to pair him with Cloak to get more attacks from him. But he still overachieved, landed both early and KO shots on the Collector.

Gardener (Infinity Gauntlet 004) was a glorified TK piece in most of the games. Not being able to fly and being a doublebase piece hurts his ability to use Stealth. I also completely forgot to use the attached Time Gem’s Super Senses. But the upside? Growing perma-hindering terrain for Stealthy folks isn’t shabby. Of all the Elders of the Universe, he’s the only one I might keep around.

Hannibal King (Amazing Spider-Man 013b) was a feast-or-famine piece. Either he gets one-shot by Darkseid or he tears enemy teams to shreds.

Howard Stark (Avengers Movie 021) was, frankly, the MVP of the team with his Outwit and Enhancement. If he weren’t limited to just two keywords, and actually had the SHIELD TA as well as the keyword, I might play him more often.

Knuckles (Infinity Challenge) was just temporary tie-up. It’s all he’ll EVER be!! And people wonder why he turns to crime.

Wonder Woman (Streets of Gotham 034) underperformed, getting killed in a single turn in the first two matches and the only character to die in all three. But that’s because her damage potential is so high and her stats/powers “hulk up” a little. So I’ll definitely run her on my next “Diana’s Wardrobe” team if the points work out.

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Much more Figure Flush on Friday.

Continuing Heroclixin’s photographic record of Super-Strong figs that can hold objects. There were a few in Streets of Gotham that got missed in all the holiday and early-year Top Ten madness.

Hawk (Streets of Gotham 018 and Fast Forces 005 ) holds his token very firmly under his cape. The Venom-pumped Ghost of Batman (051) also has a cape-based hold, though not as good. Similarly tenuous is jet-suit Batman (013), whose forearm just gets a grip. Finally, Spartan Warrior Spirit can balance a token in his arms. But it’s prone to toppling over.

(EDIT 4/1/13) WHOOPS!…I’m just now realizing that I already published this lineup early in January! Sorry folks, looks like the April Fool is me!

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Tomorrow: Figure Flush week three results!

A fellow poster on HCRealms started a thread about figures we love, but forgot thanks to all the new hotness. That revived this idea for a Top Ten I had while doing my list of favorites of 2012: listing my faves for all the years prior to 2010, the first year I tallied.

I started playing the game in spring 2005, only becoming a regular tournament-goer around late summer that year. So I can’t really do a top list earlier than 2006.

To wit, here are my favorites HeroClix of 2006.

10 Experienced Invincible (Invincible)

iv001

The original HeroClix version of Black Adam had just retired, so this Indy piece was one of the new close combat lightweight Hypersonic bricks of the moment. Only having the single top click of the power kept this teen more of a finesse piece than one might expect. This clix made me a bit of a fan of the comic.

 Unique Black Bolt (Sinister)

sn096

It might surprise readers that I nearly passed on Sinister entirely. But it’s true: I used to be a bit more competitive-minded than I am now, and this summer 2006 set didn’t fill the bill. I only really wanted one piece: Black Bolt, for his supreme Running Shot + Pulse Wave skills.

In practice, though, BB was one of the biggest finesse pieces in the game’s history, what with his soft Defend top-dial and cratering mid-dial followed by a end clicks AV upswing. He was ultimately limited to fun themes such as my pre-keywords Illuminati theme.

He’s now permanently shelved in favor of the 2011 versions. But for 2006, this piece was one of my faves.

8 Experienced Captain Marvel (Supernova)

sv080

This version of Genis-Vell had one of the more unpredictable dials in the game. Starting with an Earthbound,  0 damage Close Combat Expert click (in his Rick Jones form), I’d most often use Protected to push him to his run-and-gun Captain Marvel clicks. But once he gets hit hard through his Invulnerability, then the fun really begins:

  • BAD: A high-Speed Mind Control click #5 with 15 DV Super Senses that begs to be pushed or healed off of.
  • BETTER: A high-AV Pulse Wave click #6 that’s HALF the Speed of the previous one. But it’s a Tough one with slightly better DV.
  • BEST: Stealth, Outwit, Psychic Blast and ESD on click #7. I won games by landing on this one.

Great F.U.N. and still my favorite version of Genis-Vell by far.

7 Experienced Multiple Man (Sinister)

sn050

Madrox the Multiple Man became a minor favorite in his early-’90s X-Factor days, so I was glad to see his five dials (REV, pog, LE) in HeroClix. Of them, the Exp. was the best with his Perplex skills making the others better in turn.  To date, I still have more of these than the others.

6 Limited Edition Iron Man (Supernova)

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It seems hard to imagine now, but there was a time in HeroClix when Iron Man was not very well represented at all in the game. His clix were either poor and overcosted (X-Plosion REV) or mediocre and glass-jawed (Armor Wars REV) or a costly one-click-wondrous Unique (Ultimates).

This, the classic mid-1980s “new-look” Silver Centurion armor, was the first really good Iron Man, even holding up mostly in today’s Stark suit wars.

5 Veteran Kang the Conqueror (Supernova)

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I was quite angered to not pull a single version of Kang in my Supernova brick. in addition to being a fan of the character (after his starring role in the great Avengers Forever mini), the dial was amazing, starting with a then-and-still-staggering 13 AV Running Shot with 4 damage Perplex. Very top-loaded at 199 points but with a super sculpt, this is still the Kang I want to run most.

4 Experienced Dr. Mid-Nite (Collateral Damage)

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I was even more angered not to pull a single Dr. Mid-Nite in my first-ever brick purchase, Collateral Damage. The Exp. finally gave me that Willpowered medic that I’d envied others fielding (in the form of Jane Foster), and one that was actually superior. Being a JSA fan and completist at the time, the good doctor was a shoo-in for this list even if he’s not quite good enough to make the Top Medics one anymore.

3 Experienced Umbra (Collateral Damage)

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I still am a Legion of Super-Heroes completist. But man, was that team just north of unplayable — until this blue lady came along. With her 17 Defend and Stealth, she could nudge the then-extant LSHers’ DVs from their starting highs of 16 or 15 (seriously, there was only ONE other member with 17 DV!!) to the then-above-average 17 and make them playable. She stayed relevant when the team’s roster beefed up in 2007, especially the Exp.

She’s now obsolete with better choices out there to back up the Legion (and with the banning of the old Fantastic Four ATA feat) but she’ll always be a favorite of mine.

2 Unique Crimson Avenger (Collateral Damage)

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She fit two completist themes in my collection — JSA and black person — but she was also a surprisingly playable piece, the kind of under-the-radar fig that would come to dominate my less-than-optimizing team builds. Double target, 8 range Psychic Blast gave way to Range Combat Expert to Psychic Blast again, all with a rock-steady 9 AV. Phase her in, push to attack (making certain a JSAer is there to keep her DV up) and then Regen from the last click back up to maybe the 2nd. Love her still and would play her more if she had more than just the Mystical keyword.

 1 Atom Smasher (Giants)

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This fig is the reason I still play HeroClix.

I was just a little into the game with Fantastic Forces and Armor Wars, only being willing to attend my local venue but opting not to go with fellow players to big prereleases or buying bricks or anything. But I liked the giant mechanic, flawed though it was at the time, and Atom Smasher was one of my favorite DC characters.

So when his mug was confirmed for the Giants collector set, which you could only get by buying brick of Collateral Damage, I was all in from that point forward.

The figure turned out OK, too. He has a better Speed value with Charge than many other giants, and solid combat values, too. JSA TA helps him weather the many ranged shots he takes, and while his mid-dial AV slumps badly, he ends with a super spike that’s made him a 97-point legend in the annals of my HC play.

I don’t often play a JSA team anymore, even in Golden Age, but when I do, I’m playing Atom Smasher.

Continuing the photographic record of Super-Strong figs, we’re taking a look back at some we missed in Streets of Gotham, starting with this scaly guy:

Killer Croc (021) holds this token very securely between his left paw and knee.

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Tomorrow: A new — and shorter — version of the usual Top Ten list I do the first week of the month!